Sino-Swedish Scientific Expeditions in Northwestern China

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Sino-Swedish Scientific Expeditions in Northwestern China

After the World War I, Germany rapidly recovered its economic strength and planned to build up the trade route between Europe and Eastern Asia. To do so, animatronic animal geographical data were necessary before before beginning any construction. Therefore an expedition to Central Asia had to be organized first. German authorities invited the Swedish geographer Sven Hedin to become a leader of the geographic exploration. Hedin spent the most of his life exploring in the central regions of Asia. He wrote several books about his Asian adventures including famous discovery and exploration of the Lobubao lake in the Xinjiang region. However, Hedin did not have a smooth start with this expedition. The Chinese scholars requested to arrange a fair deal, and make a joint Sino-Swedish exploration team. They further asked to keep all specimens found in China. Finally, Hedin agreed with the conditions and the Sino-Swedish Northwestern Science Expedition team was established in Beijing in May 1927. Sven Hedin became the team leader, and Professor Shu Bei-huei of the Beijing University as the deputy leader. This is how this serious international cooperative expedition begun.


In 1928 through 1931 the expedition explored territories of Inner Mongolia, Ningxia, Gansu and Xinjiang, animatronic mammoth for sale and collected numerous dinosaur fossils from the Upper Jurassic to Upper Cretaceous deposits. There were two outstanding experts in geology and paleontology in the team of the Sino-Swedish Northwestern Science Expedition: Professor Yuan Fu-li from the Tsing Hwa University ( currently Qing Hua University ) , and Dr. Birger Bohlin, a student of Professor C. Wiman of the Uppsala University in Sweden. B. Bohlin arrived to China in 1927. He worked in Zhoukoudian first, and later in 1928, when Hedin invited him to join the Sino- Swedish Northwestern Science Expedition, he became in charge of collecting fossils. Within five years of the expedition contract, Bohlin traveled all over the northwestern China and collected significant amount of Tertiary mammal fossils. At Tebch of Urad Houqi and Bayan- tu of Inner Mongolia, first remains of Prntoceratops were collected in China. In 1953, Bohlin published a research report, “Fossil Reptiles from Mongolia and Kansu,” which include description of dinosaur fossils collected during by the expedition in 1928 to 1931.


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